On “Reality”

Action Painting II

Another critic has written that your “worlds are static. They may become tense with obsession, but they do not break apart like the worlds of everyday reality.” Do you agree? Is there a static quality in your view of things?

Whose “reality”? “Everyday” where? Let me suggest that the very term “everyday reality” is utterly static since it presupposes a situation that is permanently observable, essentially objective, and universally known. I suspect you have invented that expert on “everyday reality.” Neither exists.

Vladimir Nabokov
Interview by Herbert Gold, 1966
Collected in Strong Opinions (1973)

Painting by Mark Tansey: Action Painting II (1984)

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